An energy-efficient and environmentally friendly LNG-fuelled vessel, built by the Incheon Port Authority (IPA), received international attention at this year’s LNG Bunkering Conference held in Singapore. IPA took the opportunity to share information gained during the management and construction of the Econuri.
Launched in 2013, the 200-ton Econuri measures 38 meters in height and 8 meters in width. It can accommodate up to 57 passengers with a cruising speed of speed of 27.7 kilometers per hour and has completed about 400 journeys to date.
Compared to diesel-fueled vessels, the LNG-propelled vessel offers fuel cost savings of 24 percent and drastically reduced emissions of nitrogen oxide and carbon dioxide.
The IPA reportedly proposes to hold a seminar later this year on the success of the Econuri and the eco-friendly policy the organization pursues. It claims the vessel was the first LNG-fuelled ship in Asia.
IPA said the building of the vessel only became possible after changes were made to government policy; the Urban Gas Act was revised and other various measures taken to set a new standard for LNG ships.
Study of LNG fuel system and efficiency
According to the Journal of the Korean Society of Marine Engineering, the Econuri was the subject of a study in 2016 which assessed the dynamic characteristics of the fuel gas supply system as well as the gas consumption during variable load operation, and the fuel remaining in the fuel tank for the next LNG bunkering. ‘Onboard the Econuri is an IMO type C tank and fuel gas supply system (FGSS) of low-pressure type (approximately 5 barg) with four-stroke DF engines.
The major findings of that study were:
“(a) Through examination of navigation patterns of Econuri, we verified that stable operation was available even at shutdown and radical load change in gas supply system like drastic changes of flow rate or fuel pressure.
“(b) Approximately 2.9 % of LNG fuel was consumed in the navigation with port guidance of Econuri. During this time, the fuel gas consumed was about 0.58 m3 for 40 min of operation. If the ship was bunkering up to 95% of the fuel tank volume and it performs re-bunkering at 30%, it is possible to sail approximately 22 times without bunkering at Incheon Port.”
The report is available from here: www.jkosme.or.kr/_common/do.php?a=full&b=72&bidx=551&aidx=6825
Sources: Korean Bizwire, Journal of the Korean Society of Marine Engineering, Incheon Port Authority